Two women stabbed to death in terror attack in Marseille

Violet Powell
October 3, 2017

Police earlier said they had cordoned off the area and an operation was underway.

French President Emmanuel Macron tweeted that he is "deeply outraged" by the "barbarous" attack while praising the swift but cool-headed response by the soldiers.

Police called the incident a "likely terrorist act".

"Two victims have been stabbed to death", De Mazieres said without elaborating.

Police sources told Sky News the attacker shouted "Allahu Akkbar" as he carried out the attack at Gare St. Charles.

A witness told the Reuters news agency that she saw a man pull out a knife from his sleeve and then stab a young girl and a woman while shouting something that sounded like "God is greatest" in Arabic. French media reported that both the victims were women; one had her throat cut and the other was stabbed to death.

There, police say that a knife-wielding assailant entered the station and killed two women before being fatally shot by military police.

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There was no reason to believe the acid attacks were terror-related, police said.

France's national train operator SNCF has asked people to postpone planned journeys via the station.

Sunday's incident comes amid strong fears from possible terrorist attacks in France following the series of attacks executed by ISIS- or Qaeda-linked fundamentalists in the last years.

Knives have been the weapon of choice in a string of smaller-scale attacks in recent months, mainly targeting troops from the 7,000-strong Sentinelle anti-terror force set up to patrol the streets and vulnerable sites such as stations and tourist attractions.

The Paris prosecutor's office, which oversees all terror cases in France, said it had opened a counter-terrorism investigation into the Marseille attack.

The Saint Charles railway station was evacuated and closed for several hours after the attack, and Marseille police warned people to avoid the area.

Police said the suspect, believed to be 30, crashed the vehicle through a barricade and hit the officer at about 8.15pm local time (yesterday morning, Singapore time), sending him flying almost 5mthrough the air and onto a police cruiser.

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